Olympia (August 10, 2012) – Voters who care about the ability for seniors and people with disabilities to get quality care in their own homes have a clear choice in the race for Washington’s next governor, according an analysis of Rob McKenna’s budget proposals by SEIU Healthcare 775NW, the state’s largest union representing 43,000 caregivers.
“McKenna’s budget proposal would require hundreds of millions of dollars in cuts to home care services for seniors and people with disabilities,” said SEIU Healthcare 775NW Secretary-Treasurer Adam Glickman. “An arbitrary 6-percent cap might make for a good sound-bite, but it’s bad policy and doesn’t account for the growth in the senior population over the next several years.”
McKenna’s proposal of a 6-percent cap on funding to long-term care and in-home care services would quickly lead to underfunding of this essential public program.
The Washington State Budget & Policy Center called McKenna’s proposal, “A harmful equation that would require cutting the very things that help Washingtonians thrive.”
Under McKenna’s proposal, the state would have spent millions less on vital services to the most vulnerable citizens. “In 2006 alone, our state would have invested over $1.1 billion less in health care, children’s services, environmental protection, and other core functions of the state, if (McKenna’s) cap was in place,” according to the Budget & Policy Center.
Washington’s burgeoning senior population is expected to double by 2030, with an additional 400,000 home care aides needed to allow seniors to live independently in their homes. The cost of ensuring quality home care services for this growing population will significantly outstrip McKenna’s proposed budget caps and lead to major cuts or leave people without care entirely.
For a more in-depth analysis, please visit Washington Values Care.
Washington Values Care, sponsored by SEIU Healthcare 775NW, is a resource center for voters who support quality long-term care for seniors and people with disabilities.